We’ve all experienced it at some point or another- we feel like we’re being pulled in 50 different directions. Can’t tell our head from our you know what. Overwhelmed with work, and kids, and stress, and whatever else. We can only balance so much, do so much, achieve so much. We’re frustrated, and kids don’t help that situation- but it’s not their fault.
So what happens when you realize you forgot:
- To take out something for dinner?
- To get toilet paper at the grocery store? (even after you double AND triple checked your grocery list)
- ….or when you completely forget to write a grocery list?
Let me guess: at least one of those has happened to you, at least once.
Now, to be honest, these three things happen to me quite a bit. But even more so, I feel like I can’t be as much as I need to be with the girls. When Bear was born, Monkey was only 10 months old. She had hit so many milestones already, but she didn’t have very much time to be an only child. And then Bear had some many needs…on top of being a newborn, the colic made it to where we were constantly wrapped up in her until we finally realized there was nothing we could do to make it better. And after colic? Reflux. The hits just kept on coming when it came to Bear. She had a huge appetite, unlike what I had ever experienced with Monkey. And then, yet again, when Bear is 6 months old, I find out I’m already a few months along with Bug.
Our girls are “Irish Triplets.” This means they’re all within a year of each other- or even less, in Monkey and Bear’s case. The older two, as I previously stated, are 10 months apart. Bear and Bug are just under a year- 359 days, to be exact. Monkey is two, Bear is one, and Bug will be 4 months on July 14th. As far as the popularity or at least the commonness of this occurrence? I didn’t look into Irish triplets, but I do know that Irish twins accounted for approximately 35% of siblings back in 2013.
So how did this happen?
Now- I’m not dumb. I know what causes children. I have cable, I have hobbies (now I do, at least) and I’ve gone through sex ed. The amount of jabs I’ve received in the last year and a half is crazy. I’ve heard every remark in the book (and then some) about having kids too close or having too many kids. And honestly, when I sit down and think about it, I don’t know if I would go back and change the way I did it. The girls are amazing; each with a very distinct and unique personality. But when Bug finally came, C and I both knew we were done growing our family. The only problem was, I had barely had time to help the family I already had to grow individually.
Monkey started walking at around 13 months, and she didn’t stop after that. Bear started walking right after she turned 1- and same story as her sister, she’s been on the move ever since. Bug is obviously too young to walk, but I have a feeling she’ll be a busy body just like the other two. With one that can’t really move and two that don’t stop, I feel even more like I’m pulled in 12 directions at any given point.
So how do you balance with so many things taking time?
When we brought Bug home and I was on my maternity leave from work, I busted my butt to make sure that I spent one on one time with both of the big girls each day. I would do something simple with both of them individually- be it cooking breakfast, or waking one of them up a little earlier than the other to rock in the rocking chair. Putting one down for a nap a little after the other so we could play by ourselves for a while. Whatever worked, I did it. I took them for a walk every day, up and down our block, which amounted to just over a mile. I worked to make sure they didn’t feel forgotten.
Now that I’m back at work, I feel like it’s harder than ever. But it’s all a matter of managing my time. And since I’ve started being more conscious of that, I can not only tell, but I feel when I’m slacking on managing my time. I start to slip. Sleep in a little later. Start slacking on my workouts a little more. I come home from my workday and don’t want to put aside time to play with the kids when they want. I make excuses like “well I’ve got to clean” or “dinner needs to be made” or that I’m tired.
But if I continue to make those excuses, then they’ve really been cheated out of a childhood. I have the time to do it, and when I don’t, it’s a choice. It’s not their fault that they were born so close, or when I’m so young, or when we still don’t really necessarily have any idea what we’re doing with life. That is absolutely, 100% not anywhere near their fault.
So everyday, I will work to wake up and make a better, conscious decision to dedicate time to them again. Not to say I already don’t- but you know that guilty feeling. When you get a little more irritated than was warranted. Or you yell a little too loud. Put them to bed a little earlier than necessary; tell them to calm down or not be so loud when they’re just trying to be kids. Every mom feels it at some point or another. And if you don’t, then please, TEACH ME YOUR WAYS!